AOTW: Covify

As a developer, there are many things you can do with an image: filters, face detection, object recognition, and more. Last week, Covify, an app that uses image recognition to scan music albums and add them to Spotify, won the Next Web Hackathon in Amsterdam.

Covify takes advantage of a lesser known feature of OpenTok, the getImgData() API, which captures a base64 representation of the image on your webcam. Covify used this call to grab the image from the webcam, then send it to their servers to scan it and identify which album it is, then return to the user a link to add the album to Spotify.

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AOTW: OnTheAir’s Video Call-In Show Platform

Communication between influencers and their fan bases are in a funk; a text-based, asynchronous funk. Yes, the likes of Quora and Twitter have made it easier than ever to “connect” with individuals not normally within reach, but it’s impersonal and not in real-time. Instant gratification is nice says the gen-y girl.

Google+ Hangouts and a few other services are starting to offer folks that instant gratification through live video chats; and influencers are taking note.  The problem? Hangouts only supports ten people on-screen; pretty sure more than nine ladies wanted to ask David Beckham a question. Livestream offers a nearly unlimited audience size, but has a sad, lonely stage for one; perfect for Shiba Inu puppies however.

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Date.fm: Real-World Sparks in Online Dating

eHarmony Love Doctor, we know you have a foolproof matching formula. But there is something seriously missing from the magic equation that has worked pretty well since the dawn of time: the spark check. Photos, asynchronous messages and “winks” all have their place in the online dating scene, but our partner Date.fm is taking it one step further.

They realized that the real-world dating cues are totally lost in translation when you bring the experience online. Face-to-face interaction is important. Primarily to verify there is a spark, and secondarily to verify that their Prince Charming, who looks like Brad Pitt in his profile picture, doesn’t actually look more like Willem Dafoe. No offense to anyone who finds Willem Dafoe attractive.

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Getting started with the OpenTok iOS SDK

The OpenTok iOS SDK lets you use OpenTok video sessions in apps you build for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch devices. This means you can use OpenTok video sessions that connect iOS users with each other and with web clients.

The OpenTok iOS SDK uses the same platform architecture and concepts that are used in the OpenTok JavaScript library and the OpenTok ActionScript library. However, you code iOS apps in Objective-C.

This article will explain the most basic parts of the OpenTok iOS SDK. It will also show how the functionality and concepts used in the OpenTok iOS SDK are shared in the OpenTok JavaScript and ActionScript library.

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Chatroulette on iOS with node.js, socket.io & OpenTok

We’re going to create a implementation of chat roulette that works on iOS devices. We’ll use OpenTok for handling the video streams, node.js for the webserver, and socket.io for messaging.

In a previous tutorial, I covered how to build chat roulette on the web using JavaScript. This tutorial will focus on how to build it for iOS. Both the iOS and web app will be able to interoperate with each other.

Check out the web version of the app here.
Check out the GitHub repo here.

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AOTW: Introducing the New iOS TokShow App

Eleven long days came and went before we heard anything at TokBox headquarters. On Monday morning, an Apple employee delivered the good news. We were proud parents of an Apple approved iOS app, TokShow.

After months of anticipation, we could finally shout from our rooftop (or tweet/Facebook/Pin/Tumble) that TokBox had built an SDK for video conferencing in iOS apps. The very first of its kind, bringing “face-time” to everyone.

All proud parents brag about their kids. So with that in mind, there is no more fitting App of the Week than the TokShow iOS App. Now, anyone can enjoy live video talk shows from their iPhone, iTouch or iPad.

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OpenTok iOS SDK : Behind the Scenes

We’ve been working on this project for a few months and are pretty excited to showcase how it’s made and what it can be made to do. I’d like to share some stories that happened along the way.

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Live. In your app. Face-to-face on iOS

Today, we are changing the face of iOS applications.

With the introduction of the OpenTok iOS SDK, we are bringing the power, emotion and engagement of face-to-face video to legions of Objective-C developers and to the apps they build.

15 months ago, we started a journey towards making face-to-face video a first-class citizen on the web. Between our developer-facing APIs and our end-user-targeted plug-and-play applications, OpenTok has brought life to more than 40,000 websites.

From day 1, we never thought that OpenTok was limited to the web — the web was just a good place to start. Face-to-face is all about making digital experiences more human. And what’s more human these days than the fluid, physical interfaces to smartphone and tablet apps? They are the perfect complement to the increased engagement, emotion and connectedness that face to face video brings to the party.

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iOS Developer Contest

The OpenTok iOS SDK is now available! We’re kicking it off with a developer contest to see what kind of new, creative projects the community comes up with. Here’s some ideas to get you started:

  • Second screen coviewing
  • Video social discovery
  • Remote real-estate tours
  • Real-time hot or not
  • Video dating
  • Mobile customer service

The top 3 apps will each win an iPad 3.

All apps must be submitted by May 6, 2012 at 11:59 PM Pacific Daylight Time.

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Using video customer support on our launch day

When I tell someone that we make an API for video chat, I always ask, “Can you think of a use case?”

Every time, without fail, I get the same response: “So… like for video customer service?”

In practice, few companies we’ve spoken to get excited about video customer service. It’s hard to see what value video brings in most support scenarios. Do customers really need or want to see the person on the other end? Are customers comfortable on camera? Is it worth the overhead for reps to be manning a video support queue? We aren’t sure.

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